adjective, bump·i·er, bump·i·est.

of uneven surface; full of bumps: a bumpy road.
full of jolts: a bumpy ride.
causing jolts: Bumpy air shook the airplane.
having many difficulties or failures; full of ups and downs: He had a rather bumpy career before he settled down in his present job.

Origin of bumpy

First recorded in 1860–65; bump + -y1
Related formsbump·i·ly, adverbbump·i·ness, noun
Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2019

Related Words for bumpy

uneven, rugged, jarring, jerky, choppy, rutted, knobby, lumpy, corrugated

British Dictionary definitions for bumpy


adjective bumpier or bumpiest

having an uneven surfacea bumpy road
full of jolts; rougha bumpy flight
Derived Formsbumpily, adverbbumpiness, noun
Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 2012 Digital Edition © William Collins Sons & Co. Ltd. 1979, 1986 © HarperCollins Publishers 1998, 2000, 2003, 2005, 2006, 2007, 2009, 2012

Word Origin and History for bumpy

1865, from bump + -y (2).

Fasten your seatbelts. It's going to be a bumpy night. [Bette Davis ("Margo Channing"), "All About Eve," 1950]

Related: Bumpiness.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper